Phillies-Padres Preview

Facing Roy Halladay likely will not make it easy for the San

Diego Padres to end their lengthy home drought against the

Philadelphia Phillies.

Halladay seeks his second 4-0 start in three years Saturday

night as the Phillies try to extend their winning streak at Petco

Park to 14 games.

Halladay (3-0, 1.17 ERA) has allowed three runs and struck out

14 while going at least seven innings in each of his first three

outings. He gave up season highs of two runs, seven hits and three

walks while fanning six over eight innings in a 5-2 win at San

Francisco on Monday. Opponents are batting .304 against him his

first time through the lineup, but just .121 thereafter.

“All three starts of the year I’ve just felt better later on,”

Halladay told the Phillies’ official website. “Once I get going, I

feel like I get in a rhythm and I’m repeating better. I’m working

on trying to do a better job of that early in the game. … It’s

not that it’s not there. It’s just not consistent.”

He also added an RBI single Monday for his second hit of the

season.

“He’s really intense, man,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel

said. “And he’s really into it. And he puts a lot into it. But at

the same time, too, he also realizes what he has to do.”

The right-hander is 3-0 with a 1.90 ERA in three career starts

versus San Diego. Halladay allowed one run and struck out a

season-high 14 in 8 2-3 innings of a 3-1 win in his first

appearance at Petco Park last April 24.

With victories in the first two games of this series,

Philadelphia (7-7) has extended the majors’ longest active road

winning streak at any park to 13. Juan Pierre’s two-run single

highlighted a three-run seventh in Friday’s 4-1 win for the

Phillies, who have outscored the Padres 51-17 during their streak

in San Diego.

The Phillies are 24-4 at Petco since it opened in 2004, with

their last loss an 8-3 defeat Aug. 16, 2008.

“I think you just find a way,” Friday’s winning pitcher Cole

Hamels said. “I think we’ve just been able to do really well.”

Signed to a minor league contract in the offseason, Pierre is

batting .316 with four RBIs in his first year with the

Phillies.

Shane Victorino, who homered Friday, is 4 for 7 in the first two

games of this weekend’s four-game set. He’s 11 for 25 (.440) with

two home runs and four RBIs in his last seven contests versus San

Diego.

Jesus Guzman had an RBI groundout to score Friday’s lone run for

the Padres (3-12), who are 3 for 24 with runners in scoring

position during a four-game skid.

“Our guys have to come through at a better rate than we are

now,” manager Bud Black told the team’s official website. “When we

have opportunities, we have to cash in.”

Scheduled San Diego starter Cory Luebke (1-1, 3.71) hopes to

help the Padres end both losing streaks and build on his last

start. He allowed one run in seven innings of a 7-1 win at Colorado

on Monday, earning the club’s last victory.

“Cory’s a guy that we have a lot of faith in, not only now, but

moving forward,” Black told said.

The left-hander gave up three runs in five innings of a 3-1 road

loss in his only previous start versus Philadelphia last July

22.